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Report: County 0-0 Fleetwood

Posted: Tue 24 Jul 2012

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Hatters earn draw against Blue Square Premier champions

James Gannon named a strong side for the visit of last season's BSP Champions Fleetwood Town, and with the returning Tom Collins on the bench, it was possibly the strongest squad to date in the pre season games.

County kicked off towards the Cheadle End, although some loose play saw Town with the first effort on goal. Andy Mangan's strike well wide of Ian Ormson's goal in the first minute.

The visitors looked to have settled well with two further strikes on goal in the first three minutes of the game before Andy Halls let fly from fully 30 yards to register County's first effort on six minutes.

Halls next effort two minutes later caused Town keeper Chris Maxwell to make the first save of the game. Again the full back striking from distance. 

The Hatters were working their way into the game and Sam Sheridan, bursting from midfield was next to try his luck, his effort from 25 yards well wide.

Good pressure from County saw the first corner of the game go their way on fourteen minutes. Danny Whitehead's kick too far for James Tunnicliffe to direct goal wards.

Two poor challenges, one from each side on twenty two minutes, saw the referee take both players, Alex Kenyon for County and Gerard Kinsella for Town, to one side to calm the situation down.

A minute later he had no alternative but to show a yellow card to Barry Nicholson, after the midfielder had hauled Danny Whitehead down from behind. Sean Newton's free kick whistling narrowly wide of the post.

Town earned their first corner of the game on twenty five minutes, Ormson palming away an effort from former Hatter Alan Goodall.

Con McLaughlin became the second visiting player to earn a caution for his scything challenge on Craig Hobson on twenty seven minutes.

Danny Hattersley had the ball in the net for the Hatters on thirty four minutes, the offside flag raised after he took Tunnicliffe's precision pass in his stride before slotting home.

County were now looking the better side and Hobson was next to try his luck. Having robbed the ball off Goodall, his shot found the side netting two minutes later. Hattersley's chipped effort on the next attack just clearing the Town bar with Maxwell beaten.

Faced with a rare attack Danny O'Donnell made a superb goal saving tackle on forty three minutes, sliding in to block Andy Mangan's goal bound effort to keep the scores level at the break.

HT: Stockport County 0 Fleetwood Town 0

The visitors made three changes for the second half Nathan Pond, David Ball and ex Hatter Ryan Crowther replacing Steve McNulty, Ritchie Allen and Jamie Milligan, Tom Collins replaced Danny Whitehead for County.

The visitors began the second half as the first, looking good in possession although wasteful in front of goal, Danny Rose blazing high and wide on fifty six minutes. Hattersley repeating the feat at the other end with County's next attack a minute later.

Newton bravely blocked an effort from Mangan, injuring himself in the process. The full back replaced by Kyle Brownhill immediately.

Danny Rowe and Jon Nolan replaced Hattersley and Hobson with Junior Brown replacing Danny Rose for Town on fifty nine minutes.

Maxwell had to be at his best on sixty seven minutes as he dived full length to tip a Sheridan drive around the post. The keeper helpless as Kenyon's header smacked off the bar.

From the counter attack Ball looked to have put Town in front only for Ormson to deflect his effort around the post as the game sprang to life.

Ormson was in the action again on seventy minutes, diving to his right to smother a shot from the left.

Gannon made three quick substitutions on seventy two minutes as Jordan Fagbola, Carl Piergianni and Cameron Darkwah replaced O'Donnell, Tunnicliffe and Halls.

A slip by stand-in full back Nolan on eight three minutes saw Goodall break down the left, his cross finding Ball who shot wide. 

Brownhill gave away a cheap free kick on eighty five minutes, Ormson saving his team mates blushes with a superb save to keep out Brown's header from the cross.

With neither side able to grab a winner, Gannon would surely be the happier of the two manager's with his team's display over the 90 minutes.

FT: Stockport County 0 Fleetwood Town 0

Starting XI: Ormson, Halls, Newton, Connor, O'Donnell, Tunnicliffe, Whitehead, Kenyon, Hattersley, Hobson, Sheridan.

Subs: Annerson (G/K), Collins, Darkwah, Piergianni, Brownhill, Say, Nolan, Rowe, Fagbola.